Whistleblowing: a three part view

Author:R. D. Francis, A. F. Armstrong, I Foxley
Position:College of Law & Justice, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia; College of Law & Justice, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia; WhistleblowersUK, North Yorks, UK
Pages:208-218
SUMMARY

Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to provide contrasting views on whistleblowing, and offers a three-fold view of whistleblowing. First, it gives some formal arguments. Second, it provides an account of whistleblowing from a whistle-blowers perspective. Third, it provides advice to potential whistle-blowers. Its main purpose is to outline the kinds of arguments in... (see full summary)

 
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Whistleblowing: a three part
view
R.D. Francis and A.F. Armstrong
College of Law & Justice, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia, and
I. Foxley
Whistleblowers UK, North Yorks, UK
Abstract
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide contrasting views on whistleblowing, and offers a
three-fold view of whistleblowing. First, it gives some formal arguments. Second, it provides an account
of whistleblowing from a whistle-blowers perspective. Third, it provides advice to potential
whistle-blowers. Its main purpose is to outline the kinds of arguments in favour of whistleblowing,
express some concerns and to provide advice in the form of suggestions.
Design/methodology/approach – The initial two sections are provided to compare and contrast the
academic and the practical consequences of deciding to blow the whistle. As such, it provides accounts
that are meant to compare and contrast the two very different approaches. The nal section gives
suggestions for consideration for those contemplating blowing the whistle.
Findings – The ndings of this study are such that it is an argument rather then empirical data;
notwithstanding, the perspectives that it brings to bear all point to the value of honesty, and its role as
a justication for whistleblowing. Advice and suggestions stem from two rather different realms of
discourse. The advice to prospective whistle-blowers is derived from extensive experience on the part of
many. It is composed of both what questions to ask oneself, and what one must do to be self-protective.
Originality/value – It is argued that corruption has little to commend it apart from the personal
benet of the corrupt acquisition of wealth, whereas openness and honesty appear to be a
self-sustaining enterprise. Whistleblowing both enhances the quality of life in that it sustains the
democratic process, and may well be related to economic prosperity. In all of this, the merit of
transparency is basic.
Keywords Corruption, Whistleblowing
Paper type Research paper
Introduction
This paper offers a three-fold view on whistleblowing: the background basic material,
and then provides a third section of advice to the prospective whistle-blower. This
approach is provided to compare and contrast the academic and the practical
consequences of deciding to blow the whistle. To this end, the article contains both
theoretical arguments in favour of honesty and openness, together with a practical
account of what it is like to blow the whistle at a high level. In a combination of academic
and practical, the advice offered to prospective whistle-blowers is both what questions
to ask oneself at rst, and what one must do to be self-protective. It is argued that
corruption has little to commend it, whereas openness and honesty appear to be a
self-sustaining enterprise. One can see an argument that openness is a desirable
characteristic unless it conicts with issues such as unwarranted intrusions into
personal privacy, breaches of intellectual property or national security (although one
The current issue and full text archive of this journal is available on Emerald Insight at:
www.emeraldinsight.com/1359-0790.htm
JFC
22,2
208
Journalof Financial Crime
Vol.22 No. 2, 2015
pp.208-218
©Emerald Group Publishing Limited
1359-0790
DOI 10.1108/JFC-03-2014-0011

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